50 relationship marketing tips to grow your email list
50 Relationship Marketing Tips to Grow Your Email List Communication is key in any business however in today’s fast paced world you need to make sure you’re not just communicating but ‘connecting’ with your customers and potential clients in an authentic way so that they can begin to feel comfortable doing business with you. It’s a value-‐for-‐value exchange that will help you to build long-‐term and profitable business relationships. One of the most inexpensive, timely and effective ways to connect with your customers is through the use of email marketing. But, you first need to have a list of emails to get started. The following ‘quick start’ list building strategies will help you get going so you can communicate and connect with influence and inspire action! B2C (Business to Consumer) 1. Business Cards Put an offer on the back of your business cards to get people to sign up for your email. Remember not to be ‘in your face’ about it, just a subtle offer that peaks interest. Example: Sign Up for our E-‐newsletter to get 10% off your next purchase www.companyname.com 2. Tradeshows Bring a clipboard or sign up book with you to tradeshows and ask for permission to send emails to those who sign up so you can keep them informed and up-‐to-‐date about the latest products in your field.
3. Host Your Own Event Art galleries, software companies, retail shops and consultants can all host an event and request attendees to sign up for a special offer or incentive. I love this one. It allows people to experience your business on a much more personal level and is the perfect way to demonstrate your knowledge, position yourself as the expert and serve rather than pitch! 4. Special Clubs Create a birthday or anniversary club where you give something special to people that join your list and give permission to contact them. This is a great way to connect outside of your traditional business approach. Don’t clutter up the message with a lot of business talk – send well wishes with a special offer and even a personal note if you can. It’s a great way to stand out from the crowd. 5. Incentivize Your Employees Your employees are often times your direct line to customers. Make sure they know how much you value them and add a little incentive to the mix every now and then. Offer incentives such as $1 for every valid email collected during a certain time frame. 6. Use Groupon If you’re in retail or in a local service business give a Groupon discount. The way it works is that you give your discount ONLY if a certain number of people take you up on it in a given amount of time. Then make sure you ask for their email address in exchange for their discount. It’s a win-‐win exchange between you and your valued customer. 7. Referrals Ask your customers to share their experience or satisfaction with their colleagues or friends after working or shopping with you, and give them a ‘thank you’ discount in exchange. 8. Bounce Backs Get them back! Send a postcard or call for an updated email address for any emails that may not have gone through. 9. Newsletter Space Trade newsletter space with a neighboring business or one whos client base might be interested and served by your product or service and trade opt-‐in link space in each others e-‐newsletters. It’s a great way to increase visibility and grow your list!
10. SEO Make sure you optimize your site with keywords related to your business or service. Think of what people will be searching for when they Google your business ‘type.’ You need to be at the top of the organic search when people are looking for your products or services and SEO is the way to get there! 11. Giveaways Send people something in the mail and ask for their email address in return. Make it easy and enticing. 12. Direct Mail Do you have a postal list without emails? Send them a direct mail offer they can only get if they sign up to your email list 13. Opt-‐in Forms on Your Website Include opt-‐in forms on every page of your site, preferably above the scroll so they don’t miss it and offer a special incentive for signing up – FREE Report or Educational Information that would serve your clients or customers. Go beyond special offers and really serve your visitors with useful information. 14. Popup Windows When someone is leaving your site, pop up a window and ask for their email address so you can keep in touch or send special discount offers. 15. Forward to a Friend Include a forward-‐to-‐a-‐friend link in your emails and invite the recipient to forward your content to someone they think will find it interesting and helpful. 16. Archive Newsletter Use the archive link from your sent emails to save your newsletter on your website to boost interest in signing up 17. Offer a Community Use NING as your easy-‐to-‐set-‐up community and have your visitors interact and sign up for your newsletter 18. Email Only Special Offer email only specials and don’t use those offers anywhere but email. Make it exclusive and extra special. 19. Telemarketing If you’ve got people on the phone, don’t hang up until you ask if you can add them to your newsletter but remember to tell them it’s truly in the spirit of serving. Stay away from pitching or you’ll be sure to push people away rather than drawing them near.
20. FishBowl Put a fishbowl on your counter and hold a weekly prize giveaway – than announce it in your newsletter. Add everyone who put their card into your newsletter list. Just make sure you have a sign that tells them they will be added to your email list. 21. Opt-‐in Form in your email Include a link to an opt-‐in form inside your emails for those people who get your email forwarded to them 22. Tradeshows Collect business cards and scan them into a spreadsheet. Make sure you ask permission to send emails to them and then wow them with your spirit of service! 23. Sandwich Board If you’ve got a retail location why not use that valuable sidewalk to advertise your newsletter? Create an offer to get customers in the store to join your list and let them experience first hand your commitment to service. 24. Receipts While someone is signing their credit card receipt, simply ask them to include their email address on the receipt or even better, if you can customize your receipts add the request to the bottom of your receipts. At the end of the day, enter them into your contact management account with an automated message that thanks them for their purchase and welcomes them to your list 25. Street Fairs If you participate in a local street fair, collect email addresses right at the fair. You can sweeten the deal by offering a discount or special offer on the first or next purchase. 26. Video Contest Host a contest where you have customers create a one-‐minute video about why they like your non-‐profit, your company or products. Ask your customers to send you the videos and post them on your Facebook page. Then have your visitors vote on which should win cash or prizes that you offer. Suggest contestants email their lists, post on Twitter and Facebook and ask their friends to vote for them. You’ll get great exposure with fun engagement with your customers. Be sure to use a Facebook Contest App and follow guidelines to count up the “likes” or “comments” to determine the winner. Make sure you include you email opt-‐in form on your Facebook Fan Page to capture any email addresses and have fun with it!!
27. Handheld Devices If you’re at a tradeshow, at your store, spa, salon or restaurant, you can use handheld devices with an app that allows you to instantly swap contact information. It’s called Bump Technologies and it’s FREE. 28. Retail Packages If you’re shipping products, your box is valuable real estate! Include an inbox request on a piece of paper and tout that you’ve got “email only” offers. Direct them to your website opt-‐in form and after they join your list, direct them to a page with a special promotion offer. 29. Non-‐Profits Include an email address line in ALL donation envelopes. Add them to your email communication system with a special and sincere thank you for their contribution. 30. Use what you’ve got Export your list of personal friends and business colleagues who know you from your Outlook, Gmail, AOL and Yahoo! accounts and send everyone an email from you personally asking them to join your list. Include a link to your opt-‐in form and be sure to extend great value and appreciation for their interest. 31. iPad Offer a newsletter sign up at your location or event using your opt-‐in form that they can access right then and there on your in-‐store iPad. You’ll appear super cool and progressive J 32. Signature Include a newsletter sign-‐up link in the signature of all your personal emails 33. Chamber Members Join your local Chamber of Commerce and network with local businesses asking them if you can add them to your email list for up-‐to-‐date information, tips and tools. 34. Downloads Offer something of great value to those visiting your website like an information packed video series, podcast or PDF and have visitors opt-‐in to download the information. 35. Speaking Engagements During your presentation weave into your talk that people can always get more information about your product or service by visiting your website. You can also circulate a sign-‐up form after your presentation with an incentive to be added to your list like a special drawing or exclusive offer.
36. Networking Join a club, organization or committee for the purpose of sharing your knowledge and serving others to establish strong relationships. 37. Give Aways Each month give away a valuable and fun item that may or may not relate to your business but would be appreciated by those who are part of your audience. Must sign-‐up to be entered into the drawing! 38. Special Access Give special access to those who go the extra mile and raise their hand to say they are interested in what you have to offer. Create a subscriber only list and provide extra special, exclusive offers or trainings. 39. Surveys Include an email sign up form on all survey outreach that you do to get an inside view of what your customers are interested in so that you can serve them better. 40. Invoices Include an option to sign up for email communications on all your invoices 41. Twitter / Facebook Include the link to your opt-‐in form within your social media outreach 42. Facebook Include an opt-‐in from on your Facebook Fan Page -‐ not in the timeline….big no, no but you can include it in the boxes below the timeline. 43. Social Icons Include links to share your email or articles on Twitter or Facebook. Your recipients will be able to share your emails with their network, just remember to include an opt-‐in form link in your email. 44. WordPress Bloggers You can easily include an opt-‐in form on your WordPress blog by downloading Plug-‐ins that allow you to quickly and easily start collecting email addresses right from your blog. 45. Use Foursquare Give a discount each time a customer buys something from you and shows you that they mentioned your business on foursquare on their phone. This means that they’re telling everyone in their network that they’ve just visited you and talked about you. Virtual Word of Mouth Advertising. It’s Good!
46. Comment on Blogs and Forums Offer insightful comments on blogs or forums that your prospects or customers are likely to visit. Include a link to your site where your opt-‐in is front and center. 47. Email your Facebook Followers Each month send an email through Facebook to your new followers and friends asking them to join your list. 48. On occasion Tweet your new followers with an offer to join your list in exchange for something valuable 49. Attend conferences in your field and network with a message of service that helps others. Collect business cards from those you may be able to collaborate with and then send a personalized message including an invitation to check out your website / blog / video series or whatever value offer you can exchange and ask if you can add them to your communication list. 50. Just Ask! Be authentic, provide value and sincerely work to serve others with your product, information or knowledge and simply ask people that you interact with day in and day out if you could add them to your email list. There you have it! Lots of ideas to grow your list so you can communicate and connect with influence. Remember NOT to make the pitch about your business rather draw people in by demonstrating your knowledge and letting them experience and decide if you have something they would like and value. Your email list is your greatest business asset so be sure to treat each and every contact with great respect. Wishing you great relationship marketing success! firstname.lastname@example.org www.cindymaymarketing.com